Kevin Kisner birdied the first three holes on the back nine to take the lead and held on to win the 2017 Dean & Deluca Invitational at Colonial on Sunday. Kisner held off the defending champion Jordan Spieth, who nipped at Kisner’s heels all day, shooting a 5-under-par 65.
Kisner shot a 4-under-par 66 to finish at 10-under 270, including a clutch par save on the 18th hole after a wayward tee shot and an approach that was off the back side of the green and well below the hole. He finished a stroke ahead of Spieth, Sean O’Hair and Jon Rahm.
Spieth shot a bogey-free 65, and was standing on a chair to see over the crowd at the 18th green when Kisner putted up the mound to 5 feet of the cup and then made the winning putt. That came right after Rahm’s 10-foot birdie chance skirted just to the left of the hole.
The 33-year-old Kisner got his second PGA Tour victory in 148 starts since his debut in 2011, and a check for just more than $1.2 million. He was a runner-up twice this year, and six times over past three seasons.
Kisner had a three-stroke lead at the turn on the final day of the Arnold Palmer Invitational in March before finishing a stroke behind Marc Leishman. Kisner made a nearly 95-foot chip-in for eagle to get him and fellow Aiken, South Carolina, resident Scott Brown into playoff at the Zurich Classic’s new team format before losing on the fourth playoff hole to duo of Australia’s Cameron Smith and Jonas Blixt of Sweden.
After a 14-foot birdie at the 420-yard 15th hole at Hogan’s Alley, Kisner had a two-stroke lead. That at the same hole where Spieth, playing two groups ahead of him, punctuated an 11-foot birdie putt with a fist pump.
But about the same time Kisner made a bogey at the par-3 16th, Spieth was hitting his drive way right at the 18th hole and went on to save par after a chip to 5 feet. Kisner hit a similar drive, and also saved par.
Kevin Kisner interview Kevin Kisner interview after winning DEAN & DELUCA: